The New York City Anti-Violence Project announced today that it stands with GLAAD in our petition drive and advocacy work protesting the recent Grammy nomination of reggae singer Buju Banton’s album “Rasta Got Soul.” Banton has a long track record of advocating the killing of gay people. New York City Anti-Violence Project Executive Director Sharon Stapel released a strong statement in support of GLAAD’s campaign:
“At the New York City Anti-Violence Project (AVP), we know that hate violence has a devastating effect on individual victims and the communities it targets. The lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender and queer (LGBTQ) communities have seen a dramatic increase in anti-LGBTQ violence, including the highest reported murder rate in a decade, in the past year and this violence does not appear to be abating. " “Buju Banton's lyrics, which directly target the LGBTQ communities for violence and murder, contribute to this culture of hate and cannot be tolerated. It is unacceptable to honor this violent message targeting the LGBTQ communities, particularly in a year where so much brutal violence has occurred against LGBTQ people throughout the U.S. and the world. “AVP knows that none of us can condone violence based on our identities because if we do, we are all vulnerable. AVP urges all people to condemn all forms of anti-LGBTQ violence - and any violence that targets someone because of who they are or who they love.”GLAAD thanks AVP for its support and urges community members and allies to protest Buju Baton’s Grammy nomination. Tell the Recording Academy members NOT to support his nomination. The petition can be found at http://www.glaad.org/bujubantonpetition.